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Kitchen war injuries..

Last night, cutting up some mushrooms for a pasta sauce and almost sliced the tip of my finger off...cut it to the bone.
Took a couple seconds to register that I was sawing my finger.

Any badges of honor out there?

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  1. Tried to pry a couple of hot dogs off a frozen package with a sharp knife and sliced my pinky to the bone. Finger was so cold I did not notice until I saw the pool of blood.
    Fortunately I lived across the street from a hospital. Almost fainted walking to the ER.

    1. About 30 years ago I was trying to cut an Acorn squash in half, the knife slipped, & I nearly sliced a fingertip in half. Still have the scar.

      Also still bear a burn scar on my forearm from about 10 years ago when I was rotating a broiler pan in the oven & the curved edge of the hot pan brushed against my forearm. Even though I treated it well & tried to keep it clean, it did get infected & I ended up having to visit my doctor. Had some special controlled-substance cream to put on it + antibiotics. What fun!

      Outside of the above two instances, my only other mishaps have been occasional knuckle run-ins with my box grater.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Bacardi1

        I scraped my thumb yesterday on a microplane grater. Hey, makes it taste better!

        A while ago, I slipped on something and grabbed a pan handle to steady myself. It was hot, and I dropped it immediately. On my foot.

      2. Washing the dishing after prepping for Thanksgiving dinner (night before) I snapped the stem of a wine glass and put it almost through my hand.

        The ER doc was amazed I didn't hit any tendons or nerves.

        1. I have a scar on my head from a homemade cabinet door at my aunt's. The cabinet door was open, and the lowest corner (below the hinge) was sharp/pointed. Rustic cabinet, this. Someone called my name while I was rummaging beneath the sink and I got up quickly, as I would have in my own home, spearing my head on the corner. My bad.

          1. No major surgery required (yet) but several calluses from all that chopping, dicing, mincing I had to do in my parent's restaurant.

            Kitchen battles are one reason I keep a stick of Krazy Glue in my kitchen drawers. Nothing like a dab of Krazy Glue to stop the bleeding pronto! And I bet it works good for holding appendages together, too ...

            2 Replies
            1. re: ipsedixit

              Cutting a sausage for hors d'oeuvres, knife slipped, split my thumb...

              Bled too hard to hold together with Krazy glue, but eventually healed...with no scarring.

              A few scars on my fingers, but not too many -- and I keep my knives so murderously sharp that I rarely cut myself, but when I do, it's a doozy. The good news is that they're such clean cuts they usually heal quickly and with minimal, if any, scarring.

              My forearms, however, are fairly well-decorated with burns from various spatters, boilovers, and run-ins with hot pans of one sort or another.

              Tiger stripes, as Huntress used to call them.

              1. re: ipsedixit

                I have a Krazy Glue story too..

                Years ago, I broke a plate and was taking the trash out and I was swinging the trash bag and the broken plate sprung on the outer side of the bag and sliced near my right knee and opened it up about inch deep and about 4 inches long...it was like a Doctor sliced it with a scalpel.
                My DH used Krazy glue to zip it up...worked great and you can't tell I have a hairline scar..

              2. Other than minor nicks and mild burns the only time I've really hurt myself has been with a vegetable peeler. Took about 3/4ths of my thumbnail off and a good thickness of the goody underneath.

                1. Burns are my thing. I am magnetically drawn to the oven edges when removing things from its depths. I have a lovely dime sized burn on the inside of my wrist that looks just like a ringworm infection.

                  1. When I was in 7th grade we had to make a 3-D model of a cell. I think the teacher just meant like, with paper and stuff, but I decided to make a cake, and what better to represent the cell membrane than red vines candy. So I decided to slice them in half, lengthwise, and promptly sliced the tip of my index finger. It wouldn't stop bleeding so I called my mom (who was at work, I'm sure she was pleased that her 12 year old got out the knives when home alone), and she came home and took me to the ER where I got stitches. Still have a little scar there to this day.

                    1. I'm feeling all your pain..

                      1. My war injury didn't occur in the kitchen, but it started there. Years ago while moving out of my apartment, I had a little bag of trash including a huge jar of mayo left over from a bbq. The lip of the dumpster was mighty tall, and I'm mighty short. I didn't clear it. The jar broke and mayo and all sorts of glass came down all over me. I kept trying to rub it off, and I'd cut myself a few times. I actually got frustrated and cried, haha! A nice gardener guy came over with a hose and helped me gently spray away most of the mess, but I was left with a few nasty little cuts on my arms.

                        1. Washing a wine glass, fingers inside the glass, thumb outside, working the cloth around the bottom of the glass, not realizing there was a huge piece of the rim broken. Completely sliced the webbing between my thumb and forefinger as far as it would go. That took forever to heal!

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: tacosandbeer

                            washing wine glasses has caused a number of friends some pretty awe-inspiring scars. Another friend of mine severed the tendon in her thumb -- one of those dumb deals where it was in *exactly* the right place to cause maximum damage.

                            1. re: sunshine842

                              It wasn't enough to change my technique, and every time Mr Tacos sees me washing the crystal, he says "isn't that exactly how you nearly took your thumb off?" Now I just have a closer look before I start.

                          2. Watching a crucial baseball game while slicing veggies on a mandoline (I know, I know...). Manager decided to replace the struggling but talented starting pitcher with a notoriously erratic reliever. Looked up tp yell at the TV and lopped off the tip of my pinky.

                            4 Replies
                            1. re: Pwmfan

                              two words: kevlar gloves. I find the hand guard that came with the mandolin awkward to use, but the glove works fine. I even experimented with running my gloved hand over the blade - it just slide over the edge with no cuts.

                              Our last Thanksgiving dinner got postponed due to a trip to the emergency room. I came in from picking some sage to find blood all over the kitchen and bathroom, and Mr. Tardigrade insisting it was just a scratch (he was cutting cornbread and the knife slipped and didn't quite take the top of the thumb off. Several stitches later we were able to get back on track with the help of our guests)

                              1. re: tardigrade

                                insisting it was just a scratch

                                That was my husband when I put the wine glass stem through my palm. I pulled it out and he took a look at it and said "looks ok to me."

                                Ah, not so much when I could see "stuff" that I didn't recognized.

                                1. re: tardigrade

                                  "it is only a scratch"
                                  i *had* to recall monty python's black knight , "tis but a scratch." LOL http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zKhEw7...

                                  1. re: alkapal

                                    One of the best scenes in a film full of many! I think I have to pull it off the shelf now....
                                    "I've had worse..." Greatest movie ever.

                              2. I once grabbed solidly and firmly on to the handle of an All-Clad skillet that had just been extracted from a 500 degree oven. Nothing like having a giant 2nd degree burn on your palm to slow your cooking, and everything else, down.

                                I am much more careful about putting a towel or potholder on the handle the minute it comes out now. I've even got a couple dedicated handle cozies.

                                1. A few years ago, I reached into the oven to check on something, completely unconcerned with the distance between the inside top of the oven and my forearm. Ouch.

                                  About 2 weeks later, I did the exact same thing. Once burned, twice shy? Not me! Still have faint scars; they look like horizontal track marks.

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. November 13, 1992. I was putting some oxtails into a dutch oven to brown, and a piece of oxtail slipped from my grip and splashed a lot of the hot oil on my forearm. Second degree burn about 7" long and maybe 2" wide. I said some bad words. Here's the stupid part: I originally wasn't going to get any medical attention for it until my wife saw how bad it was (blistered, raw, gooey). She made me go to the emergency room.

                                    Now, 19 years later, it's still a pretty cool scar.

                                    1. I had my unfortunate avocado incident. I grew up learning to thwack the seed with a knife to pull it out. That's all fine until you are holding the avocado in the palm of your hand and you thwack it..and the seed splits. The avocado was pinned to my hand.
                                      Because it didn't hurt, I knew I had problems. Pulled it out without fainting, called a friend and promised not to mess up his new car, and headed to the ER. Long story short, after many guacamole jokes, I had severed the nerve. The middle finger in my left hand had no feeling.
                                      Reattachment surgery left me with a finger that can feel everything on the left side but tingles on the right side. I have a wicked Harry Potter-ish scar, long before Harry Potter and yeah...I use a spoon these days.

                                      4 Replies
                                      1. re: rHairing

                                        Ouch, I'm in pain just reading this. Did you also used to slice bagels while holding them in your hand? I use the same technique with avocados but only with the seeded half on a cutting board.

                                        1. re: rHairing

                                          Avocados are dangerous! I didn't quite do the damage you did, but I managed to put the tip of a knife almost all the way through the palm of my hand once when stabbing a pit. Weirdly, it didn't hurt or bleed much, but I did it in front of several hysterical roommates who nearly fainted at the sight of the knife sticking out of my hand.

                                          1. re: rHairing

                                            I thwack the seed with a knife, but I put the avocado on the cutting board. The worst that happens then is that it falls on the floor. Holding the fruit in several layers of dishtowel is supposed to help, but that's still getting the knife too close to my hand.

                                            1. re: rHairing

                                              Sitting here with three stitches now. Knife slipped off the pit and into my thumb. Add me to the spoon club from now on.

                                            2. Years ago - slicing lemons for the iced tea at work. Waitresses not allowed to use kitchen knives so we used serrated steak knives. Blade go caught in a seed and slid to the side and across my finger. Lemon juice did NOT help the pain.

                                              4 Replies
                                              1. re: calliope_nh

                                                my sister did the exact same thing....on her first day at work.

                                                1. re: calliope_nh

                                                  That reminded me of having to grate the rind of a mountain of lemons, to make lemonade for the cafe I used to work for. I scraped the lemons fast and hard against the Microplane, being under the pressure of having to be efficient. After enough lemons, hand-eye coordination started to falter and a big piece of my finger got in. Of course I still had to continue and band-aids didn't help to keep the lemon juice from my bleeding, searing finger. The blood probably was kept pumping because of all the vigorous action too.

                                                  I spent a good part of that day (and the next, I think) grating the rind of those lemons and juicing them by hand, while the cut was still raw and only partly protected by band-aids, until eventually I found myself some disposable gloves.

                                                  1. re: vil

                                                    did they serve "strawberry-lemonade" that day?

                                                    1. re: alkapal

                                                      Don't ask, don't tell, don't remember ;)

                                                2. Christmas dinner last week and my 87 year old dad is cooking a huge prime rib. When I arrive at 4, I am informed the roast is "cooking way too fast" based on his oven thermometer. So as I am slicing potatoes on my mandolin for the Cook's scalloped potato recipe I am feeling major time pressure to get the dish prepped and in the oven . . . he is pacing the kitchen and then looks at my mandoline and says "that it looks dangerous . . ."
                                                  not a minute later, I have managed to slice a huge gushing flap into my thumb pad . . . argh!!!!! I cannot remember the last time I cut myself in the kitchen. The kicker is I am trained as a surgeon and really hate making an error with a sharp object.

                                                  1. as a former architecture student, I have filleted a few digits on my left hand over the years, this is why I swear by sharp knives, heals much faster with just a butterfly bandage.

                                                    1. Quivering reading all these replies..

                                                      1. 14 stitches. Didn't see bone as in your case, but still troubling to see a flap of flesh dangling:

                                                        1 Reply
                                                        1. One run in with a mandolin. Yes stitches, yes nerve damage, yes painful recovery. One scar on my neck from a burn. Neck? I was pulling a sauté pan out of my wall oven (I'm short) and the hot handle went into my neck.

                                                          6 Replies
                                                          1. re: sherrib

                                                            Sounds like the mandolin is one mean mo fo..
                                                            Is there a protective shield you can use so one doesn't slice off a good chunk of skin?

                                                            1. re: Beach Chick

                                                              yes, there's usually a "holder" that will keep you from slicing your fingers.

                                                              But most of us know so much better and so try to do it barehanded so we don't waste those last few slices of whatever.

                                                              (I got rid of my mandoline years ago because I never used it. I just rarely ever need to slice enough to justify cleaning the darned thing with all its pieces -- and washing a mandoline is another risk)

                                                              1. re: sunshine842

                                                                Still love my mandoline, but if you don't want to use the guard, a Kevlar kitchen glove does the trick as well as loading into and removing from the DW.

                                                                1. re: sunshine842

                                                                  i ALWAYS get nervous seeing TV chefs using a mandoline without protection. i can feel myself grimacing in anticipation. (of course, any mishaps would not be shown, but maybe they are going for that "edge" of exciting television).

                                                                2. re: Beach Chick

                                                                  I WAS using the shield! The potato got stuck and I guess as I tried to push it through, my hand slipped right OFF the guard and bye bye piece of thumb. I haven't used it since but I've been craving thinly sliced veggies so I recently purchased a protective glove but haven't had the chance to use it yet. Probably still too traumatized.

                                                                  1. re: sherrib

                                                                    yes, unless the guard is firmly implanted, it can slip right off the food… and some foods aren't really built that way.

                                                              2. Grated my knuckles on a cheese grater while making mac and cheese. Don't tell my family, but I just rinsed the blood off, blotted the cheese dry and used it. And no, we did not have guests over.

                                                                1. Hell, I've been scarred by damned near everything possible used to prepare food, knives, glass, mandolins, even a close call with a chain saw while prepping wood for the offset. In a way though, the worst was, when, cleaning fish on a hot day (technically in the driveway, not the kitchen), I (unthinkingly) wiped the blade across my unaproned thigh. Took me a few minutes to realize that it wasn't sweat on my leg and foot (or that I would have to hose down). Closed it up with clean gauze and duct tape - had to stitch up the hole in the shorts too.

                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                  1. re: MGZ

                                                                    jeebus. That beats the friend of mine who decided to brace a piece of wood against his thigh while he was drilling a hole...

                                                                    (he's a nice guy, and not stupid, but he doesn't stop to think before he starts things....)

                                                                  2. I have a whole collection of scars and burns, but there are two that stand out.

                                                                    First one...I was dumb enough to take an extra gig the evening before a big party. I thought I'd be home by 11pm or so and hubby would get lots of stuff done in the meantime. It turned out to be an overnight shoot, so I didn't get home until 6am. To make matters worse, hubby got *nothing* done. I got three hours sleep and worked like a madwoman to get everything ready. I was chopping mint for the very last dish and managed to slice the tip off my forefinger. The party raged on while I went to the hospital.

                                                                    Second, I had spent all day cleaning the kitchen to within an inch of its life. Hub was on the way home, so I was going to warm up some soup for him. I turned around and saw that the electric coil of the stove was sticking up. So, with the flat of my hand, I pushed it back into place. Problem was, I had forgotten that I had already turned it on. Hubby came home to find me crying with my hand in a bucket of ice water. The kids told him "Dad...Mom said a really bad word really loud".

                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                    1. re: Christina D

                                                                      ha! a friend did that once, I offered to light her cigarette, but she insisted on using the electric stove, then hopped up on the counter and put her hand down. the placement of the sear could not have been planned better, it really fit the curve of the palm below the thumb.

                                                                    2. My newest injury - slopped boiling water on my feet. I have quarter sized blisters between 2 toes, and on my little toe, wrapping around to the bottom of my foot. I had to put the pot down before I could take the sock off, so that made it worse than if I had been in bare feet. I usually wear shoes when in the kitchen, but I was cooking in a friend's house, and left my wet shoe at the front door.

                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                      1. re: jeanmarieok

                                                                        I sloshed boiling water over my hand once while making tea - I don't think I've ever had a burn that hurt that badly (and I've had some doozies, mostly involving bacon grease). The worst part was that I was at work, and there was no ice to be had. No scar, though, unlike my grease burns. And it surely wasn't as bad as the time I saw my mother slosh burnt caramel over her hand while making creme caramel. Just thinking about that one makes me queasy.

                                                                        1. re: biondanonima

                                                                          yeah, because it sticks (one drop of molten toffee on a knuckle during the Christmas baking)

                                                                      2. the biggest non-injury at our house?

                                                                        A few years ago, we got a farm-raised turkey for Thanksgiving. As is the custom in France, it still had the head and neck attached when I picked it up.

                                                                        So the morning of our dinner, I removed the head and neck, then peeked inside to see the giblets (oh, good, she thought -- giblet gravy!)

                                                                        Much to my surprise, when I reached in to remove them, I found them firmly still attached in their original position.

                                                                        My husband came down to the kitchen to find me standing there with blood all the way to my elbow, the bleeding heart in one hand, and a chef's knife in the other.

                                                                        He turned around, yelling, "Let me go get changed, and we'll go get you stitched up" --

                                                                        In his half-awake fog, he saw blood and a knife, and assumed I'd cut myself badly (not even a nick, happily)

                                                                        It's a good giggle now, but nearly gave him heart failure at the time...

                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                        1. Reading all this made me shudder, and no more pictures, please :-)

                                                                          One of the most remarkable kitchen scars is when I had to resort to chain up the fridge of my open kitchen, when DD was barely two and somehow learned to open the fridge door to make a mess from it.

                                                                          The chain I used was heavy enough that it tended to slip to the back of the fridge, and if I lose the end of the chain, I had to pull the fridge out to fish it out. That was a pain, and I really could not think of a better solution at that time.

                                                                          On that day, I was making toast with my vintage toaster whose metal exterior gets all searing hot. I was under the weather too, and probably distracted, when I was juggling with the fridge chain. I absent-mindedly rested my arm on the toaster and, even though finally registering that I seared my arm on it, my brain told me to keep holding onto the chain so as not to let it fall behind the fridge.

                                                                          All that delay in icing it probably made it much worse, and I was left with a bay leaf-sized patch of oozing, seared flesh for more than a week. I nursed it with Polysporin and honey for all that time, until finally it started healing. When the scabs started falling off, I saw that the scarred skin had dark spots all over - didn't know that was how seared meat looked like! Luckily, I believe all the aloe vera and rosehip oil helped, because now, the scar is barely noticeable.

                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                          1. re: vil

                                                                            I'm impressed - honey and rosehip oil are just lately seeing their day of respect! So glad it all worked nicely for you. Ouch.

                                                                          2. I was taking some rather strong pain killers after a surgery and cooking dinner while under the influence. Not the smartest thing in the world. I was making breadcrumbs with our very grunty stick blender. There was a big clump caught up in the blades so I used my finger to loosen it. I also happened to press the on button with my other hand. The outcome was blood spray over the walls and ceiling and two nasty, deep cuts to my finger. I was actually surprised I didn't lose the top of it. Moral of the story, if you're in so much pain you need hardcore drugs you should be ordering pizza, not dealing with sharp or hot things.

                                                                            6 Replies
                                                                                1. re: Frizzle

                                                                                  at least you had the painkillers BEFORE you did it.... (shudder)

                                                                                  1. re: sunshine842

                                                                                    That was a blessing I think. I didn't feel it until much later that night. Fortunately at the time I had the presence of mind to wrap it in a tea towel, turn off an element and sit down for a bit then call my husband. I really was scared I was going to faint from the shock with an element blazing and a newborn in the house.
                                                                                    To this day the husband teases me about my stupidity and asks if I had been making cookie dough if I would have put my tongue in it (I'm guilty of skimming cookie batches before they make it to the oven). I try to point out that cookie mix uses a different appliance but he chooses to ignore that fact.

                                                                                  2. re: Frizzle

                                                                                    My jaw is actually hanging open... Good thing you were probably too hazy to panic a whole lot at the time.

                                                                                    1. re: Frizzle

                                                                                      You learned the hard way. Ouch!

                                                                                    2. Long ago while using an old hand held electric mixer that had a cord that plugged into the wall and the other end plugged into the mixer - a removable cord - I almost electrocuted myself in front of several guests. The cord was always falling out of the mixer body when I moved it around vigorously. I was making the whipped cream during a slightly wild dinner party, lots of people in the kitchen, and the cord end fell out of the mixer into the cream. I quickly plucked it from the cream and stupidly went to suck the cream off the end so I could continue - cream is a very good conductor of electricity and as the other end of the cord was plugged into the wall I got a nasty shock and a burn in my mouth. Would have made a good obit if I had died though:)

                                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                                      1. re: ElsieB

                                                                                        I'm not sure if I want to ROFL or gasp at that one. Yike!

                                                                                        1. re: ElsieB

                                                                                          death by electrified dairy product.

                                                                                          1. re: ElsieB

                                                                                            i don't recall how it happened exactly, but once when i plugged in some electric cord..maybe for a toaster or blender, or some small kitchen electric, i guess something was wet somewhere, and when the plug went into the wall socket, i felt the pulsing current through my body, beginning from my hand, and it was almost magnetic…taking me a few moments to be able to pull my hand away. very frightening. ii'll never forget that bizarre pulsing wave sensation. those seconds were like in slow motion.

                                                                                          2. I roasted my 1st turkey last week and in the process managed to burn my leg. I preheated the oven to 450F and didn't remember to remove the middle rack so that the turkey on the rack would fit. When I went to put the turkey in, I realized my mistake and removed the rack but there were only a few places I could sit it without melting or burning something so I rested it on an empty wooden basket. Of course, I completely forgot that it was there and in my rushing around the kitchen doing other things I managed to sear my leg pretty well.

                                                                                            Of course, I have several other scars on my hands from accidentally touching a too hot cast iron or trying to quickly remove things from a hot oven.

                                                                                            1. i thought of this thread this evening while cutting a beet in half with a knife that was too small! no injuries, but next time I'll wash the appropriate sized knife. that was just silly. :)

                                                                                              1. My worst cooking injury was actually obtained while microwaving (second degree steam burns across the back of my hand).

                                                                                                On Christmas, of course...

                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                1. re: tastesgoodwhatisit

                                                                                                  My worst burn is a steam burn, too. On my forearm. I actually felt ill for a few days afterward. I am surprised how well it healed though. You can see it, but it's not disfiguring, more like a darker patch of thicker skin.

                                                                                                2. Holy Crap...graphic and top of the food chain kitchen war injury...best to Annika.


                                                                                                  1. Cooker-ergonomics (or lack of) appears to be the principal cause of my kitch'injuries!

                                                                                                    My cooker in our current house has the hob (gas rings) at waist height, microwave at shoulder-eye height.

                                                                                                    The electric grill/little oven is at thigh height and the large oven is closest to the floor at knee height and I am tall.

                                                                                                    As a result, I seem to get some magnificent burns on my right hand getting stuff into and out of the grill/oven (with the accompanying smell of burnt flesh). I think it is a combination of the angle, where oven gloves and mitts don't cover combined with the blindspot of such a low slung oven....

                                                                                                    I have so many scars/welts from this dang oven I actually had someone at work once have a 'quiet' word with me a couple of years ago about whether or not I was self-harming.... <eek!>. TBH I felt rather embarrassed when I explained I had been attempting to grill some eggplant

                                                                                                    Also sliced the tip of my right thumb down to the palm on the broken handle of a ceramic cup that broke in the depths of a sink full of sudsy washing up water.

                                                                                                    This week I almost lacerated my left hand trying to 'manually' find the Lobster Claw cracking implement in the cutlery drawer using only the power of touch but not sight during a lively conversation with OH; having had way too much Sauvignon Blanc (that will teach me not to multi-task!) but by allowing my fingers to do the walking by themselves, they came across a sharp pizza wheel, a mezzaluna and almost into contact with a mandoline cutter that I'd forgotten also reside in the same drawer!

                                                                                                    Fortunately I finally seem to have learnt that it is not a good idea to chop stuff, wash up, dry or put away kitchen knives without protective footwear. I once dropped a knife on my foot which was, fortunately, in a plaster cast, causing it to deflect its fall onto the floor narrowly missing the toes of my good foot....

                                                                                                    Despite the scars, I still love cooking though but I will have a serious think about getting a better aligned cooker arrangement for the future.

                                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                                    1. re: cavemanu

                                                                                                      well someone has butterfingers.

                                                                                                      (I too have a 12 year old burn scar on my left bicep from an encounter with a hot oven in a badly arranged kitchen, ehh it's almost faded now or maybe the rest of my skin is nearly as pale...)

                                                                                                    2. I've cut my fingertips more times than I can count when slicing and chopping, but I've never had an injury requiring more intervention than a Band-aid. I've inadvertently grabbed hot pan handles enough times to have developed some protective calluses on my hand.

                                                                                                      Last week, DH, asked me to slice the last inch of a summer sausage for her. She explained that she was afraid she would cut herself if she did it. "Aren't you afraid that I'll cut myself?" I asked, jokingly. She replied, "no, you're like the red shirt guys."

                                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                                      1. I can't count how many times I have cut off the tip of my right thumb while slicing onions.

                                                                                                        1. Steak + gravity + hot cast iron pan with too much oil.

                                                                                                          I was young and stupid, just learning how to cook.

                                                                                                          Cue hot oil burns on my brow, chin, neck, chest, stomach, and arms. Oh, and between my toes, oddly enough. Missed the eyes, thank goodness.

                                                                                                          That did NOT feel good. Nasty, scabby burns for a few months. Miraculously, my body healed completely after it all. No scars.

                                                                                                          It'll be 2 years this March. Coincidentally, I have not pan-seared another steak since then! I plan on conquering that fairly soon. :) All's well that ends well.

                                                                                                          1. I think I have seven fingertips that I can easily handle blasting hot food with. I've had more flashy knife wounds, and there was a date with a cheese slicer that ended with duct tape, but the damage I'm most proud of (yeah, yeah, mom, I KNOW it's stupid of me) is the nerve damage. It's my fun dinner party trick.

                                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                                            1. re: Vetter

                                                                                                              "a date with a cheese slicer that ended with duct tape"

                                                                                                              oh you HAVE to fictionalize that into something really salacious.

                                                                                                              and yes we do want blood and love and passion and at least a few "oops, oh NO I'm so sorry!"

                                                                                                            2. I have forearms decorated with burn scars, mostly from attempting to use the broiler, lost half of a fingertip when i was 11, and I once cut a huge X in my thumb when slicing a tomato for my lunch. I did what you are not supposed to do and held the tomato in my hand and cut it, sliced my thumb and wanted to finish up so I wrapped a paper towel around it and then stupidly cut it again. That was an expensive 10 stitch trip to the ER.

                                                                                                              The other thing that didn't involve cooking, but did involve food was when I went to sprinkle some cayenne pepper on my garden so my ginormous dog would stay out of it and stop stealing my tomatoes (advice from my vet). The only cayenne pepper I had was a Costco size container and I tried to gently shake it, but the wind caught it and a large amount got on my hand and forearm. Within hours I had huge red blisters and now have a pretty disgusting scar. I imagine I have some kind of sensitivity to it and am a lot more careful. I never eat it because it is too spicy for me, and I'm definitely not going to start. Fortunately, my dog has moved on to the mud and eating acorns so I don't need the cayenne anymore. She also eats sticks and rocks so I wasn't too worried about the cayenne. Young labs are fun dogs, but they sure can make trouble out of nothing.

                                                                                                              1. I too have numerous forearm scars from reaching into the oven to pull things out.

                                                                                                                The wierdest kitchen injury I've done has to be the time when barefoot, I went to get something out of my front loading freezer. A renegade frozen pork roast flew out and landed on my foot, breaking my toe. Needless to say, since then, I always wear shoes when looking in there.

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                                                                                                                1. re: Floridagirl

                                                                                                                  "Say, can you get the ice cream out to serve with the cake, please?"

                                                                                                                  "Sure thing...just let me put on my freezer boots first."

                                                                                                                2. This NY Times article on immersion blenders seemed appropriate for this thread:


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                                                                                                                  1. re: MGZ

                                                                                                                    It sounds all too familiar. My stick blended finger tip still lacks proper feeling.

                                                                                                                  2. I've burned myself a few times, and though painful, I mainly just feel mad at myself for being stupid.

                                                                                                                    But 42 or so years ago, I cut my thumb with a serrated grapefruit knife down to the bone. The cut was below the the lowest knuckle, and it was deep enough to make me feel nauseated.

                                                                                                                    I had to have it taped up. Every so often I rest my hand on it and feel a slight numbness there. No scar though.

                                                                                                                    1. I "Cutco'd" my finger on the first day I moved into my house with a brand new Cutco knife. With it being SUCH a sharp blade, it didn't hurt at first but was quite a bleeder. Having just moved into my house that afternoon, I didn't know where any first-aid stuff was, or if I had any at all. So I toilet-papered my wound and drove with one hand to Walmart to pick up some gauze & tape!

                                                                                                                      1. Like others, I've had myriads of burns (have the "tiger stripes") and cuts--I keep ultra-thick bandages in the kitchen, along with Liquid Skin. The cuts are fewer, though, since I finally got decent knives.

                                                                                                                        The classic, though: have a 30+ year old scar in the webbing between my left thumb and forefinger from a wine bottle opening. The Mr. and I were newlyweds, finally out of the Starving Student mode, and for our anniversary, I had bought our first-ever good steaks and bottle of wine. Had the steaks finishing in the oven, but couldn't find the wine opener (see where this is going?). Thought I could firmly hold the bottle in the left hand and stab the cork with a narrow knife & pull it out. Missed the bottle, but found the webbing in the left hand. Blood everywhere, gushing, could see down into the innards of the hand. We turned off the oven, wrapped a kitchen towel around my hand, and headed to the ER. The doc--a suave older guy--when hearing how I stabbed myself, just said "how gauche." Many stitches later and some powerful painkillers, we picked up fast food on the way home. Those dried out steaks went to the cats.

                                                                                                                        5 Replies
                                                                                                                        1. re: pine time

                                                                                                                          well the cats loved you that night... I'd like to think the doc was smirking with that comment. but then again are you left-handed, or was it your left hand?

                                                                                                                          1. re: hill food

                                                                                                                            Right handed. And typing today is painful: I'm dangerous even outside--was trimming overgrown jasmine yesterday, grabbed a hunk with the left hand (just like that wine bottle) and used the ultrasharp clippers, cutting right through my left pinky and 1/2 the nail. Still have blood drips on the walkway to clean up today. Maybe I should wrap myself in bubblewrap. I've even cut through leather gardening gloves, numerous times. Hubby always finds a left glove with a gash.

                                                                                                                            1. re: pine time

                                                                                                                              ohh honey,... I do hope you don't have a mandolin in your kitchen gear.

                                                                                                                              1. re: hill food

                                                                                                                                I do, and I have a scar to prove it. Bought kevlar gloves, best purchase since I discovered Spanx!

                                                                                                                                1. re: pine time

                                                                                                                                  I want some of those chain-link gloves pro oyster shuckers use.

                                                                                                                        2. I do this one way too often:

                                                                                                                          1. Put a hot pan into the oven (say, after searing meat).

                                                                                                                          2. Use an oven mitt to take pan out of oven, put back on burner.

                                                                                                                          3. Proceed to grasp pan handle with bare hand.


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                                                                                                                          1. re: LeoLioness

                                                                                                                            Very timely. I have the imprint of a classic All-Clad handle from the mid 70s melted onto my palm last night.


                                                                                                                          2. I also had a run-in with a mandolin slicer. I was using it for the first time to slice cucumbers (without the guard, stupidly, so I do take responsibility for it) and remarking to my husband how easy it was.... just as he said "Better be careful" I sliced off a slice of the top side of my middle finger (under the nail) and started screaming.... Emergency room followed by skin graft surgery requiring 20+ stitches on my middle finger and 10 stitches on the side of my hand where the skin graft was taken from, then months of physical therapy to regain range of motion in my finger. Luckily no nerve damage but some nasty scars.

                                                                                                                            I still cringe when I see cucumbers, and I have to change the channel when I see someone using a mandolin on TV! At the Portland Farmers' Market last summer I almost had a heart attack watching a cook slice zucchinis with a mandolin without the guard!

                                                                                                                            My husband refused to throw out the mandolin so it is currently inside a shoebox duct taped shut and marked "DANGEROUS."

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                                                                                                                            1. re: i_eat_a_lot_of_ice_cream

                                                                                                                              Ah, another reason for your name: ice cream requires no mandolin! Your mandolin injury was far, far worse than mine, but mine was also from haste & pride ("I don't need no stinking guard" mentality). Get the kevlar gloves and open up that taped box!

                                                                                                                              1. re: pine time

                                                                                                                                Haha! Yes! I've never been injured by ice cream. :) Yes, I was definitely too cocky with the mandolin. It took me a while to even get the nerve to pick up a knife but luckily the injury didn't keep me out of the kitchen too long! I don't know if I can ever touch that mandolin again though.

                                                                                                                            2. For the new badges of honor, I wish you all the best and heal fast.

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                                                                                                                              1. re: Beach Chick

                                                                                                                                Three years ago, I was puncturing holes in a potato (for baking) with a steak knife. Well I missed one of the stabbing motions and was unfortunately holding the potato in my left hand. I stabbed my thumb and bled profusely for several hours before an ER visit. Due to numbness, I had thumb surgery done. Luckily the surgery revealed nothing but bruising and no nerve damage.

                                                                                                                                A couple thousand dollars and a scar later, I no longer use a knife and no longer hold the potato - if I puncture it at all!

                                                                                                                                  1. re: GutGrease

                                                                                                                                    GutGrease--don't mean to laugh, but if I do, it's cause I've also stabbed myself while holding food--duh. Now I nearly tie my left hand behind my back while stabbing a baking potato or the pit from an avocado. Has saved a bunch of stitches, I'm sure!

                                                                                                                                    1. re: pine time

                                                                                                                                      I've been looking for a butchers apron, which has a loop in the back specically for this purpose. I really want it for the times I am using a cleaver to hack through bone. My left hand is behind my back when I do this but I'd like a lttle backup in case my reflexes override my caution!

                                                                                                                                    2. re: GutGrease

                                                                                                                                      Oh man, this is one of my biggest cooking fears. I'm glad you are on the mend.

                                                                                                                                  2. Just about everyone I know who's worked as a line cook (including me) has matching burn scars on the back of their hands - on the meaty part right between their thumbs and index fingers. It comes from repeatedly burning that spot while removing things from the oven, and lifting too high and coming in contact with hot metal. After about 20 times, you end up with a more-or-less circular brand.

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                                                                                                                                    1. re: NE_Wombat

                                                                                                                                      I have a few of these, but only because I use a towel to handle hot stuff, which is fine for light things like aluminum pans but bad for heavy things like a carbon steel pan that's been in a hot oven. It's the combined pressure and heat that does it.

                                                                                                                                    2. Had a fondue party with friends, while shoving meat on my fork I put the fork right through my hand. I excused myself from the table and asked my husband to join me. When he saw the fork right thru the fatty part of my hand bewt. the thumb and index finger he wanted to take me to the hospital. Since I was no no pain and little blood I had him pull the fork out, put a bandage on it and rejoined the party. After the company left he tossed out the fondue set, that was over 30 years ago, have not had fondue since.

                                                                                                                                      1. When we were first married I decided to treat my husband to lobster. Got a four pounder and a pot of boiling water. Thought, for some stupid reason, that I should take the bands off the claws. When it started waving its claws around I grabbed the first thing handy to stick between the pinchers so I could grab it.The wooden handle of my grandmother's carbon steel knife. I tried to dodge the blade and grab it but the knife slit the entire length of my finger. Word went out at the hospital er about the woman who was knifed by a giant lobster.

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                                                                                                                                        1. re: cook152

                                                                                                                                          Ouch! Think I'm feeling better about my knife-as-corkscrew fracas.

                                                                                                                                        2. I have a relatively new one on my right hand below the base knuckle of my pinkie. I was using a knife to separate two frozen sausage patties, holding the knife in my left and the sausage in my right and using the dull edge of the blade to pry the sausages apart. I thought I was being pretty careful until the knife slipped and my left hand jerked back, burying the sharp edge bone deep in the side of my hand. Am I the only one who feels REALLY stupid when you do something like that??

                                                                                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                                                                                          1. re: PotatoHouse

                                                                                                                                            yeahhhhh...because even as you're prying away, there's that little voice inside your head saying "don't do it....don't do it"